Grade I winner Afternoon Deelites has been pensioned due to infertility and will be sent to Old Friends equine retirement facility near Georgetown, Ky. The 19-year-old son of Private Terms had been standing since 2004 at Clear Creek Stud near Folsom, La.
During his racing career, Afternoon Deelites was trained by Richard Mandella for owner Burt Bacharach. Bred in West Virginia by Bacharach’s Blue Seas Music, Afternoon Deelites was an instant success, winning his first three starts as a 2-year-old, including the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) and Hollywood Preview Breeders’ Cup Stakes (gr. III).
Continuing his winning ways into his 3-year-old season, Afternoon Deelites scored victories in the 1995 Malibu (gr. I), San Felipe (gr. II), and San Vicente Breeders’ Cup (gr. III), and lost by a head to Larry The Legend in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I). In that year’s Kentucky Derby (gr. I), Afternoon Deelites was eighth to Thunder Gulch.
Afternoon Deelites was retired to Brereton Jones’ Airdrie Stud near Midway, Ky., after his 4-year-old season, during which he notched another grade II victory.
During his stallion career, he sired graded stakes winners Zappa, Deelightful Irving, Three Hour Nap, Monoestrellado, Miss Pickums, and No Tolerance. Moved to Clear Creek Stud in Louisiana for the 2004 breeding season, he sired two Louisiana-bred champions in Princess Deelite and Nob Hill Deelite. Overall, Afternoon Deelites is the sire of 309 winners and 23 stakes winners who have earned more than $21,700,000.
“It is always a sad day when you lose the services of a horse of Afternoon Deelites’ quality,” said Clear Creek Stud owner Val Murrell in a release. “His average earnings per starter of $56,000-plus has made him very appealing to the breeders in Louisiana. He will be hard to replace. I would really like to express my gratitude to Michael Blowen of Old Friends for agreeing to let Afternoon Deelites live out his retirement there.”
Afternoon Deelites was bred to 27 mares in 2010 and currently has 34 2-year-olds.